Jul 23, 2024  
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog 
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

History, M.A.

Admission Requirements

In addition to meeting the college graduate admission requirements, applicants must have completed a minimum of 18 to 24 semester hours in history at either the undergraduate or the postbaccalaureate level with a grade point average of at least 3.33 (A=4.00).

The MA program in History follows the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences requirements for admission:

  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with an overall 3.0 (B) average on the last 60 hours of course credit.
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores
  • The materials listed below under Application Procedures.

The deadline for applications is January 1. All application materials must be received by that date. All applications are accepted to begin in the Fall semester only.

Though an undergraduate degree in history is not required, consideration is given to the number and variety of undergraduate courses in history taken, as well as experience with humanities research and writing.  An understanding of the discipline of history and preparation for graduate study are essential.

Degree Requirements

Plan I: Thesis Option

The Department of History requires that students complete 30 semester hours of credit work, all of which must be in graduate courses (6000-level or above), including at least three to six semester hours in historiography or readings (depending upon field) in the appropriate area, at least one research seminar, and a maximum of six semester hours of thesis credit.  Exclusive of the thesis courses, 15 or more semester hours must be in the major history area, and six to nine semester hours must be either in a minor area or in another department approved by the graduate director.

All students in this plan must satisfy a requirement of competency in one foreign language, either through language course work or approved examination.  See department for approved methods of meeting this requirement.

The Department of History requires that students complete a major exercise in research, interpretation, and writing: a thesis on an original historical problem.  The department also requires that students, after completing the final draft, defend their thesis and answer questions over one field of their major area in an oral examination conducted by the faculty thesis committee.

Plan II: Thesis Option with Focus on Public History

The requirements of Plan I pertain to Plan II, except that there is no minor field or historiography requirement. Students take at least one methodology course and must complete an internship for six semester hours of credit.  Admission to Plan II requires the approval of the Director of Public History.  A total of 30 semester hours is required.

Students in this plan must satisfy a requirement of competence in one foreign language, as in Plan I.  A quantitative methods requirement may substitute for foreign language, with approval of the Director of Public History and the Graduate Director.

Plan III: Non-Thesis Option

The Department of History requires that students complete 36 semester hours of credit work, all of which must be in graduate courses (6000-level), including at least three to six semester hours in historiography or readings in the appropriate area (depending upon field) and at least one research seminar.  Students following this plan must take 21 or more hours in their major area, as well as at least six hours in a minor field.  During the last semester of course work, the student must also take an oral examination over the major field.  This plan has no foreign language requirement.

Plan IV: Expedited MA/PhD

The Department of History requires that students admitted by the Graduate Committee under this plan complete thirty semester hours of credit work, 27 hours of coursework and 3 hours of Special Problems in which students write a 30-page paper based on primary source research and subject to an oral exam given by a faculty committee.  Required coursework includes 18-21 semester hours in the major area, and 6-9 in the minor area, depending on student’s areas of study.  Students must also fulfill the foreign language requirement as described in the Plan I option.  Students completing these requirements with a GPA of 3.67 or better may advance to the Ph.D. program without reapplying.

Additional information concerning required courses in major and minor fields should be obtained from the Department of History’s graduate director.

Course Requirements

  • 36 hours - 2 years at 9 hours (full-time) per semester
  • Graduate Seminar in Curatorial Issues and Practice: 3 hours
  • Graduate Seminar in History: 3 hours
  • Four additional courses in history (chosen from art history elective courses): 12 hours
  • Six free elective courses (chosen from approved interdisciplinary courses, independent study, practical internships): 18 hours
  • Thesis Track - Thesis (in written or exhibition form): 6 hours (counts toward the 18 hour free elective requirement)
  • Non-Thesis Track - Oral and Written Examination
  • Demonstrated reading ability in one foreign language*

The department of Modern and Classical Languages (MCL) at the University of Houston offers courses in reading for graduate students in French, German, and Italian.